Loblaw employees at a department meeting
Chosen as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers and Greater Toronto's Top Employers for 2013:
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors
(Oct 9, 2012)
Some of the reasons why Loblaw
was selected as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers for 2013
- unique head office which features a herb garden and Test Kitchen where new food products are created, quiet room for meditation and prayer, PC banking ATM, and an onsite market-style cafeteria
- let's everyone share in the company's success with a share purchase plan and year-end bonuses available to all employees
- salaried employees receive maternity leave top-up payments (to 75% of salary for 17 weeks), as well as parental leave top-up payments for new fathers and adoptive parents (to 75% of salary for 10 weeks)
- manages an academic scholarship program for children of employees who attend post-secondary institutions (to $1,500 per child)
- also manages a fully-paid 18-month training program for recent graduates, where new graduates are hired with full pay and benefits and can go in to streams such as store management, supply chain, merchandising, marketing, finance, IT and human resources
- depending on the position, employees can take advantage of a variety of alternative work arrangements, including compressed work weeks and telecommuting options -- the head office even features "touch-down" work stations for visiting employees
- employees can also take advantage of subsidized memberships to a fully-equipped onsite GoodLife fitness centre that features co-ed and women-only areas, treadmills, stationary bikes, stairmasters, rowing machines, weights, instructor-led classes, personal trainer services as well as sauna and shower facilities
Founded in 1919, Loblaw Companies Limited is a retailer of food, as well as a provider of drugstore, general merchandise and financial products and services
A subsidiary of George Weston Limited, Loblaw is one of Canada's largest private-sector employers with over 138,000 full- and part-time employees working at over 1,000 corporate and franchised stores across the country. Through its portfolio of retail banners, the company manages some of the most recognized and successful private label programs in the country, including the President's Choice, no name, and Joe Fresh Style brands. The company also provides a complete range of banking services to customers through President's Choice Financial and offers its customers a PC points loyalty program.
Industry: Supermarkets and Other Grocery (except Convenience) Stores.
Major Canadian hiring locations: Brampton ON.
Stock symbol: L.
Revenues: $31,250 million.
Parent company: George Weston Limited.
Full-time at this location: 2,940.
Full-time employees in Canada: 29,725.
Part-time employees in Canada: 61,803.
Workforce engaged on a contract basis: .3%.
Number of applications received at this location last year: 370,000.
Average age of all employees: 36.
Longest serving employee: 59 years.
Loblaw's physical workplace is rated as exceptional. Loblaw's modern suburban head office consists of two building modules that are connected by five-story glass atrium that serves as a gathering place for informal gatherings. Outside, the head office even has an extensive herb garden that supplies the state-of-the-art President's Choice Insider's Test Kitchen, where new food products are created year-round. In addition to the test kitchen, the building features employee lounges in project areas; temporary "touch down" workstations for visiting employees; television production studio (for the creation of internal broadcasts); dry cleaning kiosk; PC banking ATM; convenience store; prescription pick-up service; subsidized memberships to an onsite GoodLife fitness centre that features co-ed and women-only areas, treadmills, stationary bikes, stairmasters, rowing machines, weights, instructor-led classes, personal trainer services, sauna, shower facilities; outdoor beach volleyball court, basketball court and a skating rink in the winter months; medical centre; employee lounge (with comfortable seating and television); religious observance room; onsite cafeteria (market-style cafeteria with emphasis on President's Choice Blue Menu items); latte bar; outdoor patio with barbeque; discounts at nearby restaurants; secure bicycle parking; free parking; and car pool sign-up system.
Work Atmosphere & Communications
Loblaw's work atmosphere is rated as exceptional. On-the-job employees enjoy business casual dress; casual dress Fridays; employee sports teams. During the year, and across the company, employees gather for a variety of fun social events, including holiday parties during the Christmas season, a large children's Christmas party in Toronto (with 2,500 guests and 900 children) with activities and even a visit from Santa, summer barbeque to celebrate Canada Day, and new product launch events where employees get to sample and preview new creations from the President's kitchen. With thousands of employees working nationwide in a variety of settings (e.g. stores, distribution centres and traditional offices), Loblaw makes special efforts to keep everyone in the loop. Loblaw publishes a bi-monthly newsletter and hosts regular town hall-style meetings, in addition to managing an in-house production studio and business television network (accessed by all locations via satellite). Employees are also invited to email any questions directly to the Chairman, using the "Ask Galen" link on the company intranet (emails are answered by him in about one week). The company also keeps employees up-to-date and gathers feedback through a company newsletter; corporate intranet site; email suggestion box.
Financial Benefits & Compensation
Loblaw's financial benefits are rated as exceptional. To keep salaries competitive the company participates in outside salary surveys every 12 months. Individual salaries are reviewed every 12 months. In addition to ensuring its pay levels are competitive, the company also offers share-purchase plan for all employees; year-end bonuses for all employees; generous year-end bonuses (to $68,600), depending on the position; defined contribution pension plan with employer contributions (up to 5% of salary); new employee referral bonuses (to $2,000 for some positions); life & disability insurance; retirement planning assistance; discounts (to 40%) at restaurants, stores and services across Canada.
Health & Family-Friendly Benefits
Loblaw's health and family benefits are rated as above-average. Loblaw's health benefits plan is managed by Blue Cross. As part of the health plan, the employer pays 80% of the premiums. The maximum waiting period for new employees is 30 days. Family coverage is available on the health benefits plan. Retiree coverage is also available on the health plan, up to 65 years of age. The basic plan includes routine dental; restorative dental; orthodontics; eyecare ($150 every 2 years); traditional medicine coverage; alternative medicine coverage; employee assistance (EAP) plan; medical equipment and supplies; physiotherapy; massage therapy; homecare; travel insurance. Loblaw's family-friendly benefits include; maternity top-up payments (to 75% of salary for 17 weeks); parental leave top-up for new fathers (to 75% of salary for 10 weeks); parental leave top-up for adoptive parents (to 75% of salary for 10 weeks); health benefits during maternity and parental leave; extended unpaid parental leave option (beyond the first year). Additional family-friendly benefits include; post-secondary academic scholarships for children of employees; flexible working hours; 35-hour work week (with full pay); compressed work week; telecommuting.
Vacation & Personal Time-Off
Loblaw's vacation and personal time-off are rated as below-average. New employees receive 3 weeks of vacation allowance after their first year. Long-serving employees receive a maximum of 6 weeks of vacation each year. Employees receive 5 paid sick days every year. (Depending on the position, some new employees start at 3 weeks paid vacation).
Loblaw's employee engagement program is rated as very good. Employees receive individual performance reviews every 6 months. Managers receive training in how to conduct effective performance reviews. Performance feedback is also solicited from co-workers and other managers familiar with each employee's work. As part of the review process employees can provide confidential feedback on their manager's performance. Exit interviews are provided for departing employees. Loblaw rewards exceptional job performance through public recognition awards and cash bonuses for some employees. Loblaw sponsors its own in-house employee satisfaction survey. (Surveys are conducted every 6 months); Loblaw hires an outside consultant to conduct confidential employee satisfaction and engagement surveys. (These surveys are held every 6 months); [+376]; [+377]; [+378].
Training & Skills Development
Loblaw's training and skills development program is rated as exceptional. Employees receive tuition subsidies for courses related to their position. (Employer covers up to 100% of tuition). (Employer pays up to $1,200 in subsidies). Employees may also receive tuition subsidies for courses unrelated to their current position. (Employer covers up to 100% of non-related tuition). (Employer pays up to $1,200 in tuition subsidies). In addition to tuition subsidies, Loblaw supports employee career development with subsidies for professional accreditations; formal mentoring program; financial bonuses for course completions; career planning services; in-house training programs; online training programs; online employee skills inventory; new employee orientation program; formal management training program; financial bonuses for certain course completions (to $1,300). To recruit new graduates, Loblaw offers a unqiue "Grad @ Loblaw" new employee development program. Through this program, new grads are hired with full pay and benefits from the start and can go in to streams such as store management, supply chain, merchandising, marketing, finance, IT and human resources. With nearly 100 new graduates hired each year, the enlightened program is truly unique from traditional unpaid internship programs .
Loblaw's community involvement program is rated as exceptional. Loblaw supports a variety of local and national charitable and community initiatives. Employees receive paid time off to volunteer with their favourite charitable organizations. Employees receive paid time off to volunteer with President's Choice Children's Charity. Every year, Loblaw raises millions of dollars for families with disabled children through the President's Choice Children's Charity, which is also one of the country's largest corporate charities. To ensure that every cent of money donated goes directly to charity recipients, Loblaw covers all of the charity's administrative and operational costs in their entirety. In addition, the company has donated money to local community agencies through their "Store Community Investment" program and recently partnered with Food Banks Canada, becoming one of the first national grocers to participate in a food drive campaign at the national level. Loblaw also encourages employees to volunteer in their communities by providing a $500 donation to initiatives that employees volunteer more than 40 hours per year. 2.73.
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